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Fluxus was the 20th century's first truly international, inter-medial art movement. Although it began in Europe, many American artists – George Maciunas, Dick Higgins, Alison Knowles, Benjamin Patterson, Emmett Williams – were at the centre of the group, which soon spread to the USA and Japan. Fluxus created a strong sense of collective identity, although it was never characterized by a common style or programme. All the same, differences of opinion arose: the Lithuanian-born Maciunas propagated artistic collectivism and rejected outright any ‘European’ individualistic cult of genius, while the ‘individual mythology’ of Beuys was in line with the European spiritual tradition.
On account of similar conflicting views, the performance of Stockhausen’s ‘Originale’ in New York led to open strife within the Fluxus group.